Recently, head coach and my main man Jim Calhoun has come under fire for being called out for being paid $1.6 million a year from the great state of Connecticut. With a $2 billion budget deficit facing the state, some think that Calhoun should give some money back, but he says no way. I am with Jimmy on this one. I'm sure this contract was negotiated well before the economy hit the skids so why should he have to give money back? Hell naw, he's gonna get his! Besides, being the head coach of a major basketball power is not a fun job at all. Believe me, he is worth the amount of money he gets paid. He is the hardest working man in Connecticut.
In his 23 years at the University of Connecticut Jim Calhoun has managed to take a team that had always been overshadowed by Georgetown and Syracuse to national prominence. He has won two NCAA Championships, 6 Big East Championships, and has sent 22 players to the NBA. in doing so, he has also revived the culture of sports in the state of Connecticut. Since the Whalers left Hartford, UConn basketball is the biggest ticket in the state. Unless Jose Offerman is back in Bridgeport.
But the strenuous and time consuming job of coaching basketball games is not the only thing on Calhoun's plate, he also has to recruit. Calhoun has not disappointed in recruiting, always getting some of the best players in the land (except Ryan Gomes) to come play in the sleepy little town of Storrs, CT. What's more, Calhoun also has to make time for appearances and to run his annual Jim Calhoun Basketball Camp. In the midst of all this, Calhoun has also been diagnosed with cancer making his life even more hectic.
Coaching is not as glamorous as it appears. My neighbor is a Boston College football coach, and during the season he is never around. He is gone before I leave in the morning, and he told me that he often works so late that he sleeps at the office. I'm sure Jim Calhoun's life is very similar, if not more demanding since he is the head coach. Sure he makes a lot of money, but he also brings in money for the school, gives the people of Connecticut a team to root for, and also gives money back. If you don't believe me, check out the Jim and Pat Calhoun Cardiology Center at UConn Health Center. The man is worth every penny he earns. If you disagree, shut up.